Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (2023)

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (1)Abbe Condenser: A specially designed lens that is placed under the stage and usually moves vertically. Abbe condensers have an iris diaphragm to control the diameter of the light entering the lens system. By varying the size of the iris and moving the lens closer to or away from the stage, the diameter and focus of the cone of light passing through the sample can be controlled. Abbe condensers are most useful at magnifications greater than 400X. The numerical aperture of the condenser system must be equal to or greater than the NA of the objective used. All of our 1000x microscopes use Abbe condensers with a numerical aperture of 1.25. There are two types of condensers: one is a helical type that can be rotated to move the condenser up and down, and the other has a gear system controlled by the condenser focus knob.

Achromatic lens: When light passes through a prism or lens, refraction or refraction occurs. Some colors refract more than others, so those colors focus at different points, reducing resolution. To solve this problem, an achromatic lens is used. These lenses are made of different types of glass with different indices of refraction. The result is that certain colors are better (but not perfectly) aligned in focus, giving you a sharper image.

analyst: Microscope analyzers are used with polarizers to provide polarized light. In stereo microscopes, the analyzer is usually mounted on the bottom of the stereo microscope body, while in compound microscopes, the analyzer is mounted in the microscope head. A polarizer is placed over the light source of the microscope.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (2)articulated arm: A microscope stand for fixing the main body of the microscope. The base is fixed to the table or has a large base and allows various movements in three dimensions. The microscope body is held by the articulated arm baseFocus case. Articulating arm microscope mounts are commonly used in industrial and manufacturing environments.

according to: The lower mount of the microscope (you might also want to see the top arm).

binocular head: Microscope head with two eyepieces, one for each eye. In general, the term is used to describe powerful (sophisticated) microscopes. Low power microscopes are often referred to as "stereo heads" because, unlike compound microscopes, stereo microscopes have a separate objective for each eyepiece, creating two separate light paths, one for each eye. In a binocular head compound microscope, there are two eyepieces, but still only one objective, so you can't get a stereoscopic image.

Body: This term is often used for low power (stereo) microscopes to denote the basic core of the microscope without any tripod (base) or illumination. It usually includes eyepieces and objectives, but not focusing blocks.

calibration: the mathematical process used to determine the actual distance when usingeyepiece, based on the small lines in the grid.In this article you will learn how to calibrate your microscope

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (3)C interface: This is an adapter for various types of video cameras or digital cameras. The C-mount adapter fits the trinocular port of the microscope and has an integrated lens. C-mount adapters are microscope specific, which means that the brand of the microscope and the brand of the C-mount adapter must match - as each C-mount adapter is made specifically for the microscope in order to give the camera the correct focal length. The C-mount adapter has a threaded end for direct connection to a digital video camera or microscope.

Coarse focus: This is the coarse focus knob on the microscope. This button is used to move the objective towards or away from the sample (see also Fine Focus). When using a microscope with 400x or greater magnification, you need the coarse and fine focus buttons to see a clear, sharply focused image through the microscope.

coaxial focus: A focusing system in which the coarse focus knob and the fine focus knob are installed on the same axis. Usually thicker buttons are larger on the outside and thinner buttons are smaller on the inside. On some coax systems, the vernier is calibrated so that differential values ​​can be recorded.

condenser lens: Shots installed in-stage or off-stage. The purpose of a converging lens is to focus or collimate light onto the sample. High-performance lenses have very small diameters and require concentrated light to function properly. Use a condenser to increase illumination and resolution. Low magnification (stereo) microscopes do not require a condenser.

contrast board: A circular opaque plate placed on the stage of a low-power stereomicroscope. One side is white and the other is black. Depending on the staining of the sample, this can be reversed.

cover: A very thin square piece of glass or plastic that is placed over the sample on the glass slide. When used with liquid samples, the cover allows the liquid to slide and helps bring the plane into focus.

dark field: A special microscope technique that forms a hollow cone of light around the sample, giving it a backlight effect and making the sample appear bright against a dark background.Learn more about dark field and see images of how it works here. Darkfield can be used with appropriate equipment in a stereomicroscope or biological microscope.

membrane: A five-hole disk usually placed under the stage of a high-power microscope. Each hole has a different diameter. By turning it, you can vary the amount of light passing through the opening in the scene. This helps to properly illuminate the sample and improves contrast and resolution. Aperture is most useful at higher powers.

DIN optics: German standard for manufacturing microscope lenses.outside ofThese lenses are not particularly better than non-DIN lenses, but they are interchangeable from one standard DIN microscope to another. They are designed for pipe lengths of 160 mm and have uniform threads. Most good microscopes use DIN optics. "DIN" stands for "German Institute for Standardization", the body that defines the rules or DIN standards.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (4)Diopter adjustment: When looking through a microscope with two eyepieces, you need to be able to change the focus of one eyepiece to compensate for the difference in vision between the two eyes. This is done by adjusting the diopter. To correctly set the diopter of the objective, first close the eye with the diopter adjustment on the eyepiece, then focus the microscope normally so that the image is clearly seen with the open eye. Then switch eyes (close open eye, open closed eye) and focus the image without changing the main focus knob, just turn the diopter adjustment. Now, open your eyes and the images in both eyes should be clear. (This technique is also used in binoculars.)

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (5)double head: Microscope (usually high magnification) with a monocular on one side and an additional monocular tube on top or on the other side. Dual heads are useful for teachers to check what students are seeing, and can also be used for video or camera work. It is not recommended that two students complete experiments under a shared microscope as this may cause discomfort for the student using the upper eyepiece. Dual-head teaching microscopes can also have binocular heads.Multi-head teaching microscopeThere can be up to five or more teachers.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (6)Okuralines: The lens on top of the microscope you are looking at. Standard eyepieces typically have 10x magnification, but 5x, 15x, and 20x magnifications are also available. The wide-angle lens has a larger diameter and displays a wider field of view. Eyepiece lenses can be interchanged between different types of microscopes if the eyepiece fits the eyepiece diameter. If possible, it is recommended to use eyepieces manufactured for the corresponding microscope.

filter:Microscope filters are placed in the light path for color matching during observation or photomicrography.Learn more about the different types of microscope filters and how to use them here

fine focus
: This is the button to fine-tune the sample focus. It is also used to focus on different parts of the sample. In general, it's best to zoom in with the coarse focus first, then fine tune with the fine focus knob. Using a fine-focus microscope is especially useful when observing samples at 400X magnification or higher, as it makes it easier to obtain sharp and well-focused microscope images.

vision: Sometimes abbreviated as "FOV". This is the diameter of the aperture as seen when looking through a microscope. As power increases, field of view decreases. You can measure this by placing a clean metric ruler or bench micrometer on your bench and measuring millimeters from side to side. Typically, you'll see about 4.5mm at 40x magnification, about 1.8mm at 100x magnification, about 0.45mm at 400x magnification, and about 0.18mm at 1000x magnification. See also micrometer.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (7)arm ulcer: A mount for low power stereo microscopes. The arm and body are integral parts of the microscope and are rigidly attached to the base. Fixed arm mounts are commonly used in schools and are great for having shielded microscopes for students who don't have as many removable parts. In the image of the fixed arm bracket on the left, notice that the focus bracket (the part that holds the microscope body) cannot be removed from this microscope bracket.

focus: A method of moving the sample closer or further away from the objective to create a sharp image. On some microscopes, the stage moves, and on others, the tube or microscope head moves. Rack and pinion focus is the most popular and durable type of focus mechanism.

Kopf: The upper part of the microscope, including the eyepiece tube and prism. Monocular heads have one eyepiece, dioptric heads have two (one for each eye), binocular heads have two but not together, and trinocular heads have three, one of which is generally used for the camera mount.

illuminator: Light sources placed below the stage or in stereomicroscopes are often placed above the stage, or even outside the mount. There are four commonly used light sources: tungsten, fluorescent, LED, and halogen. Tungsten filament bulbs were the most common before LED lights became popular. Fluorescent and LED lights are bright, white and run cool. Halogen is very bright and white, but emits heat like tungsten. When viewing live specimens, it is important to use luminescence, such as luminescence. B. LED or fluorescent tubes so that the heat from the microscope bulb does not cook or kill the sample.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (8)Oiled: A special oil for microscopes with a standard objective lens magnification of 100x (typically 1000x total power). Put a drop of immersion oil on the cover, then lower the lens until it touches the oil drop. After focusing, the oil acts as a bridge between the glass plate and the glass of the lens. This focuses the light path and increases the resolution of the image. Type A and Type B immersion oils are commonly used in light microscopy. The only difference is viscosity (B is more viscous). Immersion oil is only used for objective oil immersion objects.

Hanggelenk: There may be a pin between the microscope arm and the microscope base. If so, you can place one hand on the base, and with the other, grab the arm and twist it back. This will tilt your microscope back for more comfortable viewing. The disadvantage of tilting backwards is that the liquid sample will run off the slide.

Ventricular adjustment: When using a stereo or binocular microscope, the distance between the observer's eyes must be adjusted. The space between the ventricles is smaller in children and larger in adults. The eyepieces can be opened wide or moved closer together to suit individual needs. This should be the first adjustment you need to make so that you can comfortably see the sample with both eyes.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (9)mechanical stage: A mechanical means of moving a slide on a microscope stage. The mechanical table consists of a sliding bracket and two knobs. Turn the knob and the slider will move towards you or away from you. Turn another knob and the slider will move left and right. It takes a little getting used to since everything is upside down in a (high performance) microscope, but it's very handy, especially when looking at moving specimens such as protozoa or other organisms in pond water. Microscopes either have a bolt-on mechanical stage that can be added at any time (on many models), or an integrated mechanical stage built into the microscope. Mechanical microscope stages are useful when you are viewing specimens at 400x or greater magnification.

micrometer: Also known as a micron, is a metric linear unit of measurement used in microscopes. There are 1000 microns in a millimeter. If something is 1.8 mm long, it can also be expressed as 1800 microns (or microns) long.

mirror: Allows you to let ambient light pass through the holes in the stage and illuminate the sample. Early microscopes used mirrors for illumination instead of built-in illuminators. Mirror microscopes are not so common these days.

monocular head: Microscope head with monocular.

nose: The part of the microscope that holds the objective lens is also known as the nose swivel device or turret.

Numerical aperture (NA): This number indicates the ability of the lens to resolve the fine details of the object being observed. It is derived from a complex mathematical formula and is related to the aperture angle of the lens and the refractive index of the medium between the lens and the sample. For the best possible image, you should have a condenser system that meets or exceeds N.A. ratings. The most powerful objective lens in a microscope. (Note: N.A. is only important for high power microscopes).

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (10)objective lens: The lens closest to the subject. In a stereomicroscope (low magnification), there are pairs of objective lenses, one lens for each eyepiece. This creates a 3D effect. In stereo microscopes, the objective lens is built into the microscope body and cannot be replaced. onestereo auxiliary lensCan be added to stereo microscopes to change magnification, but cannot change the primary lens like compound microscope lenses. High-performance binocular microscopes still have only one objective lens, so stereo vision is not possible. In a high power microscope, changing from one objective to another changes the magnification.

oil immersion objective: Objective lens (usually 100X, but sometimes 50X or 60X), designed to hold a drop of special microscope immersion oil between the objective and the glass slide. Improved resolution can be observed using immersion oil. See also "Immersion Oil" above.

Paracentris: This is an alignment issue. When changing from one lens to another, the image of the object must remain centered. Try to focus on something in your field of vision. Move to higher power. Still centered? Almost all microscopes are centered before shipment.

parjoule: This is a matter of focus. As you move from one target to another, the new image needs to be sharp enough or close enough that you can refocus with only minor adjustments. Most microscopes are parafocal. When another brand of lens is mounted to the microscope, the lens is usually not confocal.

difference: First described by Dutch physicist Frits Zernike in 1934, phase-contrast microscopy is a contrast-enhancing optical technique that produces high-contrast images of transparent samples, such as living cells, microorganisms, thin strips of tissue, photolithographic patterns, and more. Subcellular particles (such as nuclei and other organelles). Phase contrast uses optical mechanisms to convert small phase changes into corresponding amplitude changes that can be visualized as differences in image contrast. One of the main advantages of phase-contrast microscopy is that living cells can be examined in their natural state without killing, fixing, and staining. Phase contrast objectives can be added or purchased with many high performance compound or laboratory microscopes. Phase is only available for samples that do not absorb light (so-called "phase objects") and is very useful for revealing details in specific samples, such as the cellular fraction of B. protozoa, bacteria, sperm tails, and other types of unstained cells.Learn more about Phase Contrast Microscopy here

index: If you look through the eyepiece, you may see a pointer. By rotating the eyepiece, the pointer can be rotated. Visual indicators are commonly found on high school microscopes and are used in the classroom.

Polarizer: A microscope polarizer is used in conjunction with a microscope analyzer. The polarizing filter is placed above the light source, above or below the stage, and the analyzer is mounted on the head of the compound microscope or screwed to the underside of the stereomicroscope body.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (11)column: A mount for low power stereo microscopes. The microscope stand consists of a post extending vertically from the base. The microscope body can rotate around the column, and can also move up and down on the column. This bracket is an alternative to the fixed arm bracket (see above).

rack and pinion: The rack is a track with teeth, and the pinion is a gear that runs on the teeth. Turn the knob to move the pinion along the rack. These systems are used for the focusing mechanism, the Abbe condenser focusing system, and the mechanical stage for moving the platen.

Rack Stopper (ήSafety Rack Stopper): The mount stop is usually set at the factory to prevent you from pushing the lens down too far and damaging the lens or slide. If you are using very thin slides, you may not be able to get the high power lens close enough to the slides to focus. Here, you can adjust the mounting stop or place a thin glass slider under the original to bring it closer to the lens. Microscope mounts are often used on high school students' microscopes to prevent students from damaging the lens.

analyze: The ability of a lens system to reveal fine details of the object being observed.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (14)network: A very small grating pattern imprinted on a circular glass slide inserted into the eyepiece of a microscope. Sometimes called "crosshairs," microscope grids are used to actually measure the size of objects seen through the microscope. Grids come in a variety of styles, including rulers, grids, cross marks, concentric circles, comparators, grain sorters, and more.

nose thread: A nozzle that is rotatable and allows the use of different lenses - see also Nozzle.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (15)ring light: A self-contained lamp, usually attached to the body of a stereo microscope, that emits a circle of light that fills the working area with bright light. These rings are usually LED lights and are mounted on the bottom of the stereomicroscope, just above the stage where the specimen is placed. If you are using a ring light, you may need to first connect aring adapterOn the stereomicroscope so that the ring light has a place to attach the thumbscrew.

half plane lens: Not all microscope lenses are perfect. A typical achromat has sharp focus at about the center 60% of the field of view. If you're looking at something completely flat, you'll likely find that most of the center of the field of view is clearly visible, but the edges are blurry and a little fuzzy. Semi-planar lenses improve this deficiency by showing sharper images with fewer aberrations at the edges of the field of view. Half-plane objectives ensure approximately 80% of the center of the field of view is in sharp focus. They are better than traditional achromats, but cost a bit more. Achromatic objectives correct for all aberrations and ensure a 100% perfectly sharp and flat field of view.

slide: A rectangular plate made of glass or plastic on which the sample is placed. slides may have adepressedOr good for soaking up a few drops of liquid.slides readyare slides prepared with samples, sealed and labeled for future use.

slipper clutch: If the student moves the focus all the way up or down and keeps trying to turn the knob, without slipping the clutch, the focus system may be damaged. Microscope slip clutches are mechanical devices that protect microscope gears.

stage: Flat plate on which to place glass slides, for observation in a compound microscope or for viewing larger specimens in a stereomicroscope.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (16)scene cut: Clips on the table to hold slides in place. In student compound microscopes, the stage clamp can often be removed and replaced with a mechanical stage.

Brunenwitz: In a low magnification microscope, there is a frosted circular glass plate mounted on the lower illuminator. This is called a stage board. See also comparison board.

stand up: For low magnification stereo microscopes, the type of connection between the microscope body and the mount. There are three main types of microscope mounts: column, fixed arm, and fixed arm.Universal Gallows Base

hard: Refers to a microscope that observes with both eyes through separate eyepieces and objective lenses. Using two lenses, the image appears to be three-dimensional, we see it in "stereo"! See also binocular head.

tested by students: Many microscopes are designed for the classroom, and almost everything is hermetically sealed. To remove the eyepiece and objective you need special tools and they have all the safety features like rack and pinion stops. For students, these microscopes are not fully waterproof (like drop protection!), but enclosed.

down the stadium: The area below the stage, as in "Below Stage Lighting".

T-montage: An adapter used to connect a camera (usually a 35mm digital camera or a SLR camera) to a microscope. These are often used with DSLR cameras and with microscope DSLR adapters.

voltage regulation: This is the factory setting of the focus mechanism. It's set up so the instrument is easy to focus on, yet compact enough that the scene doesn't slide when you lose focus. Stage shift is caused by the weight of the stage (or tube), which automatically defocuses the microscope.

Three-eyed head: The trinocular head can be used in both high and low power microscopes and comes with two eyepieces (one for each eye) and a third port on the top for the camera. With some microscopes, you can choose to direct all light into the trinocular aperture, or half and half, or 80/20%. On some dual power stereo tripod heads, the tripod mount transmits the image through the unused lens set of the stereo eyepiece.

tower: Look at the nose.

Microscopy Terminology | Resources for Microscopy World (17)universal bracket: A long cantilever used to support the (low power) stereomicroscope body. It has many setup options that allow the microscope to be aligned in various configurations. In general, external light sources such asFiber Optic Ring Lightor aDouble Arm Downlight) in general.

large eyepiece: These are large diameter glass eyepieces. They provide the widest field of view when inspecting samples.

X: 400x or 400x magnification. The magnification of a microscope is determined by multiplying the optical power of the eyepieces by the optical power of the corresponding objective lens.

XR: X for Times (see above), R for Retractable. These lenses have a spring loaded end. So when they hit the sled, they're pulled back and telescoping inwards. This prevents the lens from being damaged or slipped.


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